Nagarjuna Caves

Gopi Caves

Useful Information

Location: in the Nagarjuni Hills, 35 km north of Gaya.
Classification: SubterraneaCave Church
Guided tours:  
Address: Nagarjuna Caves, Tel: +91-, Fax: +91-,
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
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Set in wild and inhospitable bandit country are the three mysterious caves of Nagarjuna. An important archaeological site, it has been almost ignored.

The Gopi Cave is the most important and is approached by a flight of steps. A number of inscriptions have been found here. It is believed that in the middle of 19th century, some Islamic saints used to live in these caves.

North of Nagarjuna Hill is Mirza Mandi (house of Mirza) Cave. This cave was excavated during the time of Dasharatha. There is a dry well near this cave and it seems it derived its ancient name ‘Vapuiyaka Kubha' (Cave of the Well) from this. Remains of buildings, probably viharas, can be seen around this site.

The last cave on this hill, Vedathika Kubha can be approached through a natural cleft. In fact, some structural stupas must have existed in at least a few of these caves, as this place was dedicated to Buddhist religious practices.

Text by Tony Oldham (2003). With kind permission.